Written by: Charlie Nudelman (@DJChuckDirty)
There are rare moments in my relationship with music where I can point to beautiful pieces of art that are holistically seamless. Through listening to copious amounts of hip hop, it becomes apparent that one of its most attractive and enjoyable aspects as an art form is its ability to share organic, uncensored, and raw truths. All hip hop does this. However, at rare times, a gifted artist coincidentally blends the lines of hip hop and melds it into another art form, unifying their truth through multiple distinct modes of consumption- whether its Donald Glover combining an album and a screenplay, or more clearly, Kanye West creating a visual world out of an auditory soundscape, these pieces are the some of the most striking, thought inspiring, and beautiful products in hip hop.
BROCKHAMPTON has released a project which composes musical and visual art in a way that is comparable to Glover and West in their brand new 22-minute short film, “Billy Star.” Aurally and visually, it’s a stunning and picturesque glimpse into a world that the band’s front-man, Kevin Abstract has been creating for over a year. The film takes place in the Californian neighborhood of Van Nuys, carrying a storyline that was introduced in visuals such as “EMPTY,” and “RUNNER” from Abstract’s sophomore project “American Boyfriend: A Suburban Love Story.” In “Billy Star,” we slowly see the development of the prequel to the hidden relationship and tragic suicide through unreleased songs and peaceful visual storytelling.
The off-kilter auditory elements of BROCKHAMPTON’s new music paint the backdrop for the melancholy and heart wrenching story, as the visuals provide contrast through smooth and comfortable camera movements, gentle color grading, and relatable clothing styles. Following Helmet Boy’s backstory in addition to gaining hints as to the nature of the societal and cultural standards of the setting, viewers are informed and accepting of the homosexual love story that Abstract and BROCKHAMPTON have been unfolding before them.
This film comes along with a new single called “BOOGIE” all in anticipation of the group’s third album of the year, and final studio release for BROCKHAMPTON, “Saturation III” which drops Friday, December 15th.
Check out the “Billy Star” film and the “BOOGIE” music video below!